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Home : 2005 : Mar : 27

    By Kathie

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    Here are some ideas:

    Spelling: Our entire 3rd grade sends home a list of 15 average words + 5 challenge words each week that come from a story we're reading currently. On Monday, they take a pretest. I only grade the 15 average words, but will give extra points for the challenge words. Then, on Friday (or the last day of the week) we give a posttest. This is graded by raw points. FOR DETERMINING GRADES, I only grade 5 weeks out of a 9 week grading period (the highest 5).

    Reading: We read a story out of our text each week. Students take turn reading aloud to the class. This usually gives them a good grade. Then, at the end I ask some comprehension questions. I use popsicle sticks w/ student names, so it is completely random. I just give grades on how well students are performing.

    Math: Although I correct worksheets, I rarely score them and grade them. When we have tests, I do give grades for this.

    Science: This is a little tougher to assess. In science, we do a lot of group activities. If students are actively engaged in the learning process, I can determine grades this way. Also, when we have unit tests I do factor this into their grades.

    Writing: We are fortunate to have a computer lab at our school. We have written 4 different papers (which include the brainstorm/prewrite/1st draft/2nd draft/final copy). These are graded fairly (don't critique it like a college English class). I also give automatic grades for our journal entries.

    Social Studies: Homework/tests.

    Our school has a site license version of Chariot's MicroGrade. This, however, is not very user-friendly and is a bit unfit for an elementary school. So, I purchased "Easy Grade Pro" from Orbis Software 1 1/2 years ago. IT IS AWESOME! It takes a while to understand it, but there are so many options -- it takes all guesswork out of grades. And, reports are VERY CLEAR AND EASY TO UNDERSTAND. I highly recommend this program. Find it at

    Good Luck.

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